12 Benefits of Oatmilk: Add It to Your Diet Today

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Oatmilk has seen a huge rise in popularity lately, and for good reason! Oats are a wonderfully nutritious and healthy food, with a long list of health benefits. They’re high in fiber, plant-based protein, B-vitamins, and minerals like iron, calcium, and magnesium.

Oats also have a form of soluble fiber known as beta-glucan, which has been found to improve cholesterol levels, help with blood sugar management, and decrease the risk of heart disease! Fiber can also be high in prebiotics, which encourages the growth of probiotics in your intestines.

In this blog post, I will discuss 12 benefits that oat milk offers to your body!

Table of Contents

Oat Milk Nutrition

Calories: 120
Total Fat: 5g
Saturated Fat: 0.5g
Total Carbohydrate: 16g
Total Sugars: 7g
Added Sugars: 7g
Dietary Fiber: 2-4g
Protein: 3g
Vitamin A: 20% DV
Calcium: 25% DV
Iron: 2% DV
Vitamin D: 20% DV
Riboflavin: 45% DV
Vitamin B12: 50% DV
Phosphorus: 20% DV
Potassium: 8% DV

The added sugar here is deceptive. When we think of added sugar we tend to think of table sugar. However, the FDA requires product manufacturers to list any sugar that could be a stand-alone sugar as “added sugar.” Unsweetened oat milk does not add cane sugar or high fructose corn syrup. The processing of the oats breaks some of the complex carbohydrates into simple sugars. These must be labeled as “added sugar,” even though they occur naturally.

Benefits of Oat Milk

Let’s take a look at the top 10 reasons why oat milk should be added to your diet.

1. Oat Milk is Vegan, Lactose-Free, Soy-Free, and Nut-Free

Oatmilk is Vegan

Oat milk is a type of plant-based milk that does not contain any animal products, making it vegan. But it’s also free from lactose, soy, and nuts. This makes oat milk a great option for anyone that is looking to replace cow’s milk but is allergic to soy or nuts.

2. Oat Milk Is a Great Source of B Vitamins

B Vitamins for Energy

Oatmilk is often fortified with B vitamins.

B-vitamins are essential to support brain function and have been linked to improved mood.

Riboflavin, AKA B2, IS required for the conversion of carbohydrates into usable energy, which benefits athletes and people who struggle with exhaustion from a chronic illness. Just one cup of oat milk provides almost an entire day’s worth of riboflavin.

Consuming a diet high in B-vitamins has also been associated with a reduced risk of heart disease and some cancers.

Oat milk can also be a good source of vitamin B12. This nutrient is extremely important, but especially for vegans or those following a plant-based diet. B12 keeps nerves and blood cells healthy and is involved in the formation of DNA.

3. Oat Milk a Good Source of Phosphorous and Iron

Phosphorous and iron are essential to your health, and oat milk is a great source of them!

Phosphorus

A cup of oat milk has approximately one day’s worth (DV) of phosphorus.

the body needs phosphorus to build bones and teeth. It’s also needed for the creation of DNA, RNA, ATP molecules that power cells, and cell membranes.

Phosphorous strengthens bones via calcium absorption and even helps with nerve conduction by creating a proper fluid balance in between brain tissue and blood vessels. Phosphorus is also necessary for a healthy heart and cardiovascular system.

Iron

The RDA for iron is between 10 and 18 mg each day. It is important for vegans to hit this mark each day because plant forms of iron (non-heme) are not stored as well as animal-derived iron (heme). Iron helps prevent anemia and promotes healthy red blood cell production.

4. Oatmilk Is Heart Healthy

Oatmilk may not be super high in fiber, but the fiber it has is a special type known as beta-glucans. Beta-glucan is a type of soluble fiber

Oats help maintain healthy cholesterol levels because they contain beta-glucan, a type of soluble fiber. Beta-glucan has cholesterol-lowering properties and its benefits are maintained when oats are turned into oat milk or other oat beverages. Beta-glucans can also bind to cholesterol in the gut and reduce its absorption. Drinking oat milk every day can actually help you lower your cholesterol and improve your heart health!

Oatmilk also contains no saturated fats. While some saturated fat is necessary, studies have shown that replacing saturated fats with healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats is beneficial for heart health.

5. Regulates Blood Sugar Levels

Beta-glucan for the win once again! This soluble fiber slows the absorption of carbohydrates in the gut, providing a slower and steadier supply of sugar into the bloodstream. An excellent and very healthy choice for type 2 diabetes patients looking to help regulate their blood sugar.

6. Oat Milk Is Great for Bone Health

Oat milk is often fortified with calcium and vitamin D, both of which are essential for bone health. Calcium is the main mineral used to form bone, while vitamin D helps your body absorb calcium and can even reduce cancer cell growth!

Adults need between 1,000 and 1,300 mg of calcium each day. While the amount of calcium will vary depending on the brand of oat milk you choose, a glass will usually provide between 1/3 and 1/2 of your daily need.

Speaking of, my two favorite brands are Oatley and Silk. Oatley has been around for a while now and all they do is make dairy alternatives from oats. Basically, they’re the champs of oat milk. And they are doing amazing things for the environment!

Silk has been around for a long time, focusing on nondairy milk and yogurt. Because of their popularity, you can find their products pretty much everywhere. And, as well as Oatley, part of their mission is conservation. I love supporting companies that are in line with my personal values.

Learn about all of my favorite milk alternatives here.

7. Oat Milk Provides Lasting Energy

Oat Milk Provides Energy

It’s true that oat milk is higher in carbohydrates than most other milk alternatives. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing! The higher levels of carbohydrates provided in oat milk will lead to lasting energy throughout the day.

8. Oat Milk Promotes Satiety

Oat milk is high in protein and fiber, which help you feel full faster and extend how long you feel satisfied. This can aid in weight reduction by improving appetite control and promoting fat loss.

9. Oat Milk Is Naturally Sweet

Oat Milk is Naturally Sweet

Oatmilk has a natural sweetness to it that other unsweetened nut milk alternatives lack. The sweetness comes naturally from the oats. Some of the complex carbohydrates are broken down into simple sugars through processing the oats. So you get some sweetness without adding sugar!

10. Oat Milk Is Good for Gut Health

Oat milk is beneficial for gut health because it includes a substantial amount of soluble fiber. Soluble fiber produces a gel-like substance in the intestines that helps move your food along.

11. Oat Milk Is Better for the Environment

Oat Milk is Better for the Environment

Oat milk is a more environmentally friendly alternative to other milk alternatives because oat crops have a less harmful environmental impact than dairy, almond, and soy.

12. Oat Milk Goes Well in Other Dishes

Oatmilk is incredibly versatile. Oat milk’s mild, sweet flavor makes it a great addition to both savory and sweet dishes where you would normally use milk. It also froths well, making it an ideal alternative to coffee creamers.

Possible Disadvantages of Oat Milk

While oat milk has several possible health benefits, it comes with some downsides.

Always read your labels. Some commercial oat milks may be high in added sugar. Always opt for unsweetened versions, especially since oatmilk will have a bit of natural sweetness already.

Not all oat milks are certified gluten-free, although many think they are. If you have a gluten intolerance or celiac disease, make sure and read the label and look for the GF symbol. This will ensure the oats that were used to make the product were gluten-free, as well as the facility! This will help avoid cross-contamination.

Oat milk is usually more expensive than cow’s milk and other nondairy milk options. Oats cost what they cost, and don’t benefit from subsidies like corn and soy do. This makes oat milk about 25% more expensive than traditional dairy milk on average, although prices will vary depending on what brand of oatmilk you buy.

Oat milkh has more calories than most other milks. Almond milk and cashew milk are incredibly low in calories, and even soy and cow’s milk, which are high in protein, have less calories than oat milk. But the complex carbohydrates are great for energy, as are the calories. If you are trying to lose weight oat milk may not fit into your plan. But let your macros decide.

Homemade Oat Milk? Yep!

Making oat milk at home is incredibly easy! However, it won’t be as nutrient-dense as commercially available oat milks because it won’t be fortified or enriched with vitamins and minerals.

However, you get to choose your ingredients, and you’ll save quite a bit of money!

If you are gluten-free you will be able to ensure your homemade oatmilk is GF, and you will avoid binders, thickeners, and preservatives that are found in store-bought products.

Here’s how to make it!

Blend one cup (80 grams) of rolled oats with four cups of water. Blend for 1 minute or less! Blending too long will result in a slimy product. Pour the mixture over cheesecloth or use a dedicated nut milk bag to separate out the liquid.

Your homemade oat milk will store in a glass bottle in your refrigerator for up to five days.

Once you get the hang of it, try adding a pinch of salt, a teaspoon of vanilla or cinnamon extract, a few dates, or maple syrup to sweeten it up.

Watch Mic the Vegan Make Homemade Oat Milk

Is Oat Milk Safe for Children?

This depends largely on the age of the child. Oat milk is never an alternative for formula or nursing.

However, once your baby has weaned, you have more options. Kids need calories, protein, vitamins, and minerals to grow. If you are thinking of replacing cow’s milk for your child or toddler, make sure the product you buy is fortified with vitamins and minerals that provide amounts similar to cow’s milk. Calcium, vitamin D, iron, and B12 are vital.

I generally counsel clients to choose soy milk instead of oat milk for their children. Soy milk provides a complete protein and is nutritionally the closest to cow’s milk of all the non-dairy milk alternatives.

How Does Oat Milk Compare to Cow’s Milk

Store-bought oat milk has similar amounts of vitamins and minerals as cow’s milk, due to the fact that the FDA allows fortification of milk and dairy alternatives with vitamin D and vitamin A. Fortified milk or oat provides around 20% of your daily value for each cup. Vitamin B12, calcium, and rib

The nutrition facts for each type are as follows: oat milk has considerably more carbs (16g versus 12g), fiber (3g versus 0g), and protein (3g versus 8g) than cow’s milk. The extra protein in cow’s milk may help you feel fuller longer since it delays the digestion and absorption process in your GI

Which is Better, Oat Milk or Almond Milk?

Ah, a battle of two giants in the non-dairy industry! From a taste standpoint, this is up for debate. Try both and see what you like! Beyond that, it depends.

Oatmilk is better…

  • for the environment. Almonds require an incredible amount of water to grow, and the area around almond trees are heavily sprayed with chemicals to make finding the nuts easier.
  • If you have a nut allergy.
  • For heart health, lowering cholesterol, and improving insulin sensitivity.
  • At helping you stay full for longer due to the fiber and protein content.
  • At providing energy due to the higher calorie and carbohydrate content.

Almond milk is better…

  • For people with celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity, since oat milk can be made from oats that have been cross-contaminated by wheat or other gluten grains during harvesting and processing.
  • If you are watching calories. Almond is incredibly low in calories, coming in around 25 calories per cup. Oatmilk will have between 110 and 130 calories per cup on average!
  • If you want a virtually taste-free option. Almond milk can be added in place of water to thicken up a dish without throwing off the flavor.

Benefits of Oat Milk Conclusion

Oat milk has numerous benefits, including being heart-healthy, energy-boosting, satiating, better for the environment than cow’s milk or most other non-dairy milks, and is a good choice for those with insulin resistance or type two diabetes. It’s also amazing as a milk alternative in dishes, baking, and coffee!

No wonder why oat milk is so in demand among vegans and health-conscious people.

It’s not without its disadvantages, however. It is higher in calories and carbohydrates than other dairy alternatives like almond or soy. This can be a good or bad thing depending on your goals. Children who drink oat milk need a complete protein source that is equivalent to cow’s milk for their age group, so soy milk may be a better choice. Even though oat milk is usually fortified with vitamins and minerals to make it similar to cow’s milk nutrition-wise.

If you’re looking for an alternative option for your family, give oat milk a shot.

Have you tried oat milk? Got any great recipes or favorite brands? Let us know in the comments and help our community!

If you need any assistance, get ahold of me through my contact page.

Until next time, stay fit.

Matt
Plant-Based, Plant Built

*Author's Note: The content on this website is meant to be informative in nature, but it should not be taken as medical advice. The content of our articles is not intended for use as diagnosis, prevention, and/or treatment of health problems. It's always best to speak with your doctor or a certified medical professional before making any changes to your lifestyle, diet, or exercise routine, or trying a new supplement.

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AUTHOR
Matt Walter, CHN, M.A.T
I studied Food Science and Human Nutrition at Washington State University and interned as a Strength and Conditioning Coach for the WSU football team. I am a Certified Holistic Nutritionist and former personal trainer and competitive CrossFit athlete. My mission is to make embracing and adopting a healthy vegan lifestyle simple and fun!